19 March 2012
With two weeks down and two weeks to go the Miami Marlins have a 7-6 record and are coming off a week in which they went 2-4-2, whoever unlike the record would indicate the fish had pretty good outing form most of their major league pitchers and in a few cases just had a minor league in at the end of the game who got hit hard. For example on Sunday the Marlins loss 4-2 to the Cardinals, but saw Carlos Zambrano go 4 inning in which he gave up just one run while striking out 7. They lost the game because Rob Delany gave up three earned runs in the 8th. Also in the Marlins split squad loss to the Twins, Nolasco had 5 good innings giving up only one run, but Eli Villanueva gave up 5 hits and three runs in the ninth after Mike Dunn gave up a run in the 8th and the Marlins lost 5-2.
The Marlins other real problem has been from the plate. In the eight games the Marlins played this week they averaged just 2.125 runs per game, and many of the Marlins big time hitters are not producing. Jose Reyes is only 4 of 25 (.160) so far this spring, and guys like Gaby Sanchez, Scott Cousins, Donnie Murphy, Chris Coghlan, Giancarlo Stanton, Bryan Peterson, and Brett Hayes all have batting averages under .240. The four players who are really carrying the load for the Marlins has been Hanley Ramirez (11 for 22 with 4 runs, 6 RBI, 2 HR), Emilio Bonifacio (7 for 24 with 4 runs, 2 RBI, 1 HR and 2 stolen bases), Omar Infante (7 for 18 with 3 runs, 1 RBI, 1 HR), and Donovan Solano who continues to produce (10 for 24 with an run and 2 stolen Bases). Matt Dominguez, John Buck, and Austin Kerns have also been having nice springs, all with identical .286 batting averages.
However the most impressive player this spring continues to be Wade LeBalanc. He came in for a relief of Anibal on Wednesday and pitched four perfect inning as got his second win of the Spring. So Wade, who the Marlins received from the Padres for John Baker, has pitched 10 1/3 innings and has given up just one hit and no walks while striking out nine. Compare those numbers to Mark Buehrle who was the Marlins big free agent pitcher signing this winter who in 9 1/3 innings has struck out five, walked four, given up 15 hits and 10 earned runs. It may only be spring training, but with the way that LaBlanc is pitching the Marlins may need to think about finding a way for him to pitch some games this year and possibly using a six man rotation instead of five,
Meanwhile Greg Dobbs (small tear in hamstring), Logan Morrison (sore right knee), and Giancarlo Stanton all were held out of most of the games this bast week due to various injuries. None of them are suppose to me that serious, but Logan Morrion has only played in two games thus far this spring. While Stanton was hit by a pitch last week on the wrist, xrays were negative. The injury that is currently keeping him out is sore ness in his left knee. Stanton is currently unable to run on it right now and hopes to make it back in a Marlins lineup when the fish take on the Yankees at the new park on April 1. The one reliever for the Marlins who has still yet to make his spring debut is Randy Choate, who is out with a strained muscle on his right side and he hopes to be ready to go on opening day. The one good note on the injury fron is that Anibal Sanchez was able to make his first start of the spring on Wednesday; he pitched two inning giving up just two hits and striking out four.
The Marlins also this week cut down their Spring Training roster so we should see way more of the Marlins players who are expected to start the season with the team next week. Some of the moves that were made were; Sean West, Matt Dominguez, Chris Hatcher, Sandy Rosario, Kevin Mattinson, Dan Jennings, Alex Sanabia, and Tom Koehler were all optioned to the New Orleans Zaphers and Brad Hand, and Evan Reed were optioned to the Jacksonville Sun. It should beinteresting to see how long Nick Green and Aaron Rowan stay with the Marlins as both players have struggles to say the least so far this spring (Rowan is 2 for 29 with 5 SO and Green is 2 for 16 with 4 SO).
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